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The Hopefuls (Vintage Contemporaries) Paperback – May 30, 2017
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This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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A Mother Jones Best Book of the Year
“Hilarious. . . . A pleasure to read. . . . [Close] has a light, precise touch about the way a young marriage works when the partners are caught between old ideals and new realities.” —Ron Charles, The Washington Post
“Inspired by Close’s own experiences moving to Washington for her husband's work on the Obama campaign, The Hopefuls is blisteringly honest about the circus of American politics and Washington's exhausting culture of competition—one that that renders people outside of political circles virtually invisible.” —Meredith Turits, Elle
“I couldn’t put down this juicy novel, which is all about what striving to make it in politics does to relationships.” —Megan Angelo, Glamour
“Captivating. . . . Close, whose husband worked on Obama’s campaign, uses her knowledge of this world—and her experience as an outsider—expertly. Beth’s conversational narration feels like peering into the diary of someone who shares your deepest insecurities.” —Isabella Biedenharn, Entertainment Weekly
“New York newlyweds head to D.C. to—what else?—chase their dreams. Actually, just Matt’s dreams. His wife, Beth, isn’t all that impressed by the surrounding political haughtiness until she meets another couple, Jimmy and Ash. The Hopefuls will make you rethink inviting your best married friends over for dinner.” —Marie Claire
“A much lighter, funnier version of House of Cards—imagine the jealousy and ambition of the Underwoods married with the humor of a sitcom like New Girl with its focus on friendships and playing at adulthood.” —Lauren Stacks, Chicago Review of Books
About the Author
JENNIFER CLOSE is the bestselling author of Girls in White Dresses and The Smart One. Born and raised on the North Shore of Chicago, she is a graduate of Boston College and received her MFA in fiction writing from The New School in 2005. She worked in New York in magazines for many years. She now lives in Washington, D.C., and teaches creative writing at George Washington University.
Top customer reviews
During my reading I came to Amazon to read reviews in all five star categories, and found that I found things I agreed with at each gradient. Yeah, it's essentially true that this book has no real plot. Really, it doesn't. It's a slice of life novel about a few years in the lives of a few couples. At one point I asked myself, "Why am I reading this thing? It has no plot!" And yet I still could not put it down! And then it occurred to me: this is meta voyeurism of the first rate, and I love it! The author herself weaves a lot about reality TV and schlock celeb websites into the narrative and in the end, the reader really is gazing ravenously at the lives of the Dillons and the Kellys. Why I loved that so much, I can't exactly say. I loathe reality programming and I detest celeb gossip. But it's more than that: these people, with all their faults and neuroses, are average people. Maybe that's why I loved (and hated) them.
As to Close's prose, it's top notch. She's just an excellent writer and her characterizations are mundane but realistic. Not every book can be about a Howard Roark or an Agatha Christie. Ayn Rand's Roark is a great character, but I don't identify with him. I don't see myself and my friends in him; I see them in the characters in this novel, for better or worse.